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Built by Singapore, for Singapore

From a rural town of overcrowded squatters to a modern cosmopolitan city with world-class urban infrastructure, here's a snapshot of Singapore's transformation through the ages.


The early years of our nation building were largely focused on tackling the urgent housing shortage under the constraints of insufficient resources.


In the late 1970s to early 1980s, as Singapore entered an era of intensive building activities of increased scale and complexity, the priority started to shift towards mechanisation and labour saving.

2000s and beyond

Subsequently, as the city-state further prospered, greater emphasis was placed on ensuring the sustainability and inclusiveness of our built environment.

Soon after Singapore became independent,
the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew had said,

"Over a hundred years ago, this was a mud-flat swamp. Today this is a modern city. Ten years from now, this will be a metropolis. Never fear."

Indeed, Singapore has since become a glowing showcase of a metropolitan city-state today and the Built Environment (BE) sector has played a key role in bringing about such a dramatic transformation.

Lee Kuan Yew

Find out more

Want to know more about Singapore's transformation story?
Read this e-book: "Urban Systems Studies: Built by Singapore", published by the Centre for Liveable Cities, to find out more.